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FAQs - Global Solar Solar Panels
Sunlinq and P3 Models

What is the base technology of Global Solar products?
CIGs (Copper Indium Gallium DiSelenide) photovoltaics.

How efficient are the Global Solar portable solar chargers?
Global Solar cells average 11.8% as of June 2011, and the modules range in efficiency between 7% - 9%. The modules range in output from 2w – 124w’s.

How are Global Solar portable solar chargers designed to operate?
The products were designed for portable charging applications. A portable solar module(s) can be used day after day in all types of weather conditions. However, the portable solar chargers were not designed to be left outside on a full-time basis, exposed 24x7x365. Leaving the solar module outside on a full-time basis may degrade the performance and reduce the lifetime of the module.

How long are Global Solar portable solar chargers designed to last?
Global Solar provides a one-year limited power warranty for consumer modules and a two-year limited power warranty for military solar modules. This warranty (see product warranty for more details) was written with an application of daily, repetitive use in mind for portable charging applications. The module should produce a minimum amount of power according to the technical specifications and warranty if used in accordance with the operating instructions included with the product.

For which applications are Global Solar portable solar chargers suitable?
The product is suitable for a broad range of applications including; Consumer Electronics, Outdoor and Recreation and Military to name a few.

What is the ideal temperature range in which Global Solar portable solar chargers can be used?
The modules are guaranteed to perform in normal atmospheric conditions. The optimal temperature is 25ºC ambient (outside air temperature) but the solar cells have been rated to operate in extremes from -40ºC to 176ºF. For all solar modules, output drops with increasing temperature and needs to be considered when choosing a product to meet your charging needs.

In what range of voltages do Global Solar portable solar chargers come?
Standard products come in the following nominal voltages: 5v, 12v, 24v.

Can I just plug my solar charger into my devices or do I need a charge controller?
The 12w modules have a built in regulator and in most cases you can plug directly into a device or charger. The 25w, 30w, 62w, and 124w modules are unregulated and you should always consider the capabilities of your device to accept an unregulated charger before attempting to plug in.

With the Sunlinq 25 w or P3 solar panels, you will most likely need the 7 amp charge controller for any lead acid battery and the voltage limiter for any other type of rechargeable battery. Be sure to check your device or battery operating instructions for voltage input and output recommendations before charging with the 25 watt or P3 solar panels. Please contact us for assistance.

Can solar modules be connected in parallel? Can they be connected in series?
The Global Solar modules can be connected in parallel and we offer a y-cable accessory to make this connection. Connecting solar modules in parallel effectively doubles the current (amps) and power, and keeps the voltage of the individual modules rating. We recommend you parallel connect modules of equal power (a 25w to a 25w) as this will provide the most efficient output from the connected modules. We do not recommend connecting the portable solar modules in series and do not provide cabling to support this configuration. If you require higher voltages, we offer a 62w, 24v version.

How fast will a solar module charge my device?
See the solar panel product pages for approximate charging times.

Can my solar modules be exposed to liquid/moisture?  If so, what kind and for how long?
The solar module is designed to withstand the outdoor elements including limited expose to rain/moisture. However, we do not recommend you leave the solar module submerged in water for long period of time as this may degrade the performance and reduce the lifetime of the module. We do not test exposure to other liquids but if your solar module is exposed you should immediately wipe down with a clean damp cloth to remove the liquid/moisture.  Important note: The solar module is not intended for use in salt water environments - exposure under such conditions accelerates corrosion and degradation of the module.

Can my solar modules be used to charge a laptop battery?
A solar module by itself is not suitable to charge a laptop battery directly. All laptops require a specific voltage and current to charge and any drop off by the solar module due to low or no light will cause the laptop to operate from its internal battery. Therefore, for laptop charging, we recommend a solar module plus an auxiliary battery pack that is compatible with the make/model of laptop. With this configuration, you will be able to charge/operate your laptop from the battery while the solar module provides energy into the battery pack.

The battery/solar panel combination will depend on your unique requirements (how long the solar panel will be in the sun, how long you need to operate laptop, are there any other electronics that you need to charge, budget, etc.). Please don’t hesitate to contact us to discuss the options.

Will my solar charger work in partial shade?
The Global Solar portable solar modules will operate down to approximately 20% of a sun which is a gray sky, cloudy day. Below 20%, the voltage drops off significantly and the solar module will not be able to maintain a charge into a battery or device. Keep in mind that at 20% of sunlight the power generated by the solar module will be approximately 20% of the solar modules rating.

How do I know that my portable, folding solar panel is working?
Check the charge indicator light or bar on the handheld electronic device or accessory. For battery charging, the product can be tested with a volt meter.

Will this product drain my battery at night?
No, the portable folding solar panel has a built-in blocking diode that prevents the solar array from discharging your battery at night.

Should the portable, folding solar panel be disconnected from the car battery when starting the engine?
No, the portable folding solar panel can remain connected and will not affect operation of the vehicle or any of the vehicle's electronic components.

Does the portable, folding solar panel store energy, so that I can use it later or at night?
No, the portable folding solar panel has no storage capacity. It simply provides flowing electricity for charging while out in the sun. However, the solar panel can be used to charge an intermediary powerpack that will store the energy to be used later or at night. Contact us to discuss the options.

Does the portable, folding solar panel work indoors?
No, the portable folding solar panel only works outdoors in the sun, but it can work even in cloudy conditions while outdoors.

 

 



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